In Pictures: Pandemic puts paid to Christmas markets around Europe

In Pictures: Pandemic puts paid to Christmas markets around Europe
A Christmas tree illuminates the Old Town Square in Prague (Petr David Josek/AP)

The European plazas where people would usually gather at crowded stalls to partake in hot mulled wine, gingerbread, sausages and other delicacies are just empty squares due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Christmas markets, a cherished tradition in Germany and neighbouring countries, have joined the long list of annual traditions that were cancelled or diminished this year.

November saw many European countries impose partial or tougher lockdowns as new virus cases soared. The restrictions are either being retained or only partially loosened as Advent gets under way.

Here, we look at the bustling markets of recent years – and the empty squares of today.

Roemerberg Square in Frankfurt, Germany (Michael Probst/AP)
Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin (Michael Sohn/AP)
Gendarmenmarkt Square in Berlin (Markus Schreiber/AP)
A stark contrast in Dortmund, Germany (Martin Meissner/AP)
The Old Town Square in Prague, Czech Republic (Petr David Josek/AP)
Traditional market in Strasbourg, France (Jean-Francois Badias/AP)
The Grand Place in Brussels, Belgium (Francisco Seco/Olivier Matthys/AP)

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